Wednesdays

My Monday’s are usually spent trying to get the house clean and tidy after the weekend as I don’t really like to do the housework over the weekend because I’d much rather spend my time with Kory and Rory as that’s the only time that we all really have together.

On Tuesdays and Thursdays Kory attends nursery, he only does two morning sessions and finishes by dinner time but by the time I’ve got him home, made him some dinner and got him changed out of his school uniform and into his pyjamas, it’s already the afternoon and more often than not he’s too tired from being at school to want to do anything anyway and normally I spend my Fridays food shopping and running errands.

So on Wednesdays I especially like to make sure that me and Kory do something together that’s just the two of us, we normally go to the park, to the café or for a walk, I usually leave it up to him and let him decide how we spend the day so today when I asked him what he would like to do he said he wanted ‘chips and toy!’ Which in Kory language translates to McDonald’s. So today I went for a McDonald’s date with Kory.

After getting dressed, we got wrapped up and headed out for a walk to our local McDonald’s. Whilst there we spoke about school, our upcoming holiday, things that Kory’s likes and what he would like to do once we got back home and it was nice.

So that was our Wednesday. I wonder what we’ll get up to next Wednesday… How was your day?

Monday blues

Yesterday was Monday and normally I would have the Monday blues. I love the weekends and spending time together as a family, in fact that’s the only time we get to spend together as a family so I always try to cherish the weekends but I still always end up feeling sad when Monday comes back round because that means Rory is back at work, Kory is back at school, I’m back to being on my own again and even though I have Kory, it gets lonely sometimes and I have a whole week to wait until it’s the weekend again! And boy, does Monday come round fast!

But how could I be sad when this one is being such a sweetheart?! I mean look at that little face! Like butter wouldn’t melt! What an angel he is being!

It was only the other day I was complaining about Kory’s behaviour but he’s honestly being such a well behaved little boy recently and it makes me so proud. Proud of him and proud of myself because even though I doubt myself on a daily basis when it comes to parenting, I must be doing something right when it comes to raising my son because he is kind, loving and caring and it shows.

I know this is probably just a wonderful phase that he is going through at the minute and that I’m probably going to be in for a sh!t storm soon but let this mama have her moment!

Bolton Museum & Aquarium

Recently we visited the Bolton Museum and Aquarium. We wanted to take Kory somewhere for the day but we couldn’t decide where and our options were limited… The weather was rubbish, it was freezing and raining which meant going somewhere outdoors was a no go and it was January too so we were skint and wanted to keep costs down.

We ended up visiting our local museum. Kory had never visited a museum before so it was interesting for us to see how he’d like it – or if he would. Which he did! And It turned out to be a lot of fun for us all and better than that, it was totally free! We all had a really nice time, I hadn’t visited a museum for years, I don’t know why because I’m actually a bit of a history geek so I enjoyed myself anyway, I really liked reading all about ancient Egypt and the Egyptian mummies and I think Kory really enjoyed himself too, he especially liked looking at all the different fishes in the aquarium but most of all he loved seeing the different dinosaur skeletons!

Museums and libraries are a great place to visit if you’re strapped for cash as they don’t have to cost anything, it gets you and the kids out of the house, you’re inside out of the miserable, cold weather and it’s something thats enjoyable for the whole family. Our day out to the museum cost us just £3.99 and that was because we bought Kory something from the museum gift shop. Entry to the museum was totally free, we took Kory a packed lunch so dinner didn’t cost anything and because went on a Sunday, we even got lucky with parking too and that didn’t cost us anything either!

Win win!

So that was our most recent trip to the Bolton Museum and Aquarium. Thank you for reading about our day. Have you visited your local museum recently?

Snow days

Is it just me or does everything just seem so much prettier in the snow?

We’ve had quite a bit of snow where we live over the past few days so despite both me and Kory having colds, I wasn’t going to miss an opportunity for us to get wrapped up and to get out in the snow! It’s not often it snows here so I wanted to make sure that we got to experience it together.

Kory was only a small baby the last time it snowed and he didn’t really understand what it was but this time he watched with amazement as the snow fell from the sky, he was so curious asking me all sorts of questions about it and he kept telling me how every time he walked the snow would crunch under his feet.

We made snow balls, ran, kicked and jumped in the snow and then headed home to warm up as we were freezing!

We are so lucky to live so close to all these fields… I love snow days.

The Liebster Award

I can’t believe I have been awarded The Liebster Award! I have seen a few fellow parenting blogs that I follow be nominated for blogger awards but The Liebster Award is one that I hadn’t heard of before. I would like to start by thanking Mindy Leslie from I Blame Your Dad for nominating me this for this award. Having never been nominated for a bloggers award before, I am incredibly grateful to you for giving me this opportunity and I can’t thank you enough!

The Liebster Award exists only online and originated in Germany. The word ‘Liebster’ according to its German origins means kind, sweet, pleasant, welcoming, beloved and lovely. Which is why this award is for bloggers who not only support their community but are also trying to reach the world. This award is given to bloggers by other bloggers.

The rules:

1. Write a blog post and include your award graphic in your post.

2. Thank the blogger who nominated you.

3. Answer the questions asked of you by your nominator.

4. Create your own set of questions for your nominees to answer.

5. Nominate five to ten bloggers deserving the award. Share and link your post to their blogs so they can accept their award.

My questions and answers:

1.) Who inspires you the most?

Honestly, my son. Becoming his mum made me become a better person. I wanted to be a better person for him, he inspires me to be a better person every day. I’ve never thought of myself as a particularly selfish person but becoming a mum definitely taught me the meaning of selflessness. Being his mum has made me more compassionate, mindful, appreciative, thankful and blessed.

2.) Where is the number one place to travel on your bucket list?

I would love to travel all over America with my partner and our little boy but I would especially like to experience taking Kory to Disney World. That is something that would be truly special for us all, an experience that would be out of this world and we’d make memories that would last us a lifetime.

3.) What songs are on your motivational playlist?

When I’m feeling down and in the dumps and feel like I need a pick me up, I definitely stick on my Beyoncé playlist. There is something about listening to a strong, powerful, independent woman that makes me feel like I can take over the world.

4.) Do you have any pets? If so, what? If not, why?

Yes. We have 2 cats; a boy and a girl, their names are Bobbins and Tilly and we have 1 dog. He is a golden cocker spaniel and his name is Harley. I grew up around dogs, some of my best childhood memories are from time spent with my pets and I’m still a huge animal lover now so it was important to me that Kory grew up around pets too.

5.) What is your favourite quote?

‘I am in charge of how I feel and today I am choosing happiness.’ This quote is one of my favourites because I feel like it speaks to me. Throughout my life I have always had internal battles with myself, with my own mind. Sometimes I am my own worst enemy. At one point in my life I felt like I was at my lowest, I was diagnosed as clinically depressed and had an eating disorder because I was unhappy being me, I disliked myself and the way that I looked. I have come a long way since then and I don’t let myself think that way about me anymore.

6.) Where do you see yourself in five years?

In five years I would like to have progressed in some way with my blog. I would like to be able to work from home, helping out in a school or at least have a part time job. I would love another baby and we will be married.

7.) What are you most passionate about?

I am most passionate about being a mum. To some people they are most passionate about their careers or money or their friends but to me, being a mum is the most important thing in my life. Being a mum is probably the most important thing that I will ever accomplish in my life which is why it is what I am most passionate about.

My Liebster Award nominees:

Rebecca Sellers

https://withmyloveandcourage.wordpress.com/

I’m just another mummy trying to make a difference by documenting my parenting and mental health journey.

Holly

www.whatmamabearsays.wordpress.com

Hiya, I’m Holly I’m 28 years old and a mummy to a 4 year old little girl and 20 week old boy/girl twins. Our blog shares our adventures as a family, my pregnancy with the twins, birth stories and general parenting support. Come and join us on our adventures!

Gemma

www.loveonashoestring.net

A blog all about adventures as a proud mother, a patient wife and ex-pat life. After finally overcoming our fertility challenges, we find that life as a family of three in a new country presents a whole new set of tests and exciting opportunities.

Jayde

www.motherhoodbythesea.blogspot.co.uk

My name is Jayde and I am a solo parent raising my son, Marley in Cornwall, UK. I work full time as a manager in retail and I spend my days off on the beach or exploring with my boy. Follow my journey of motherhood through my squares of Instagram or on my online blog.

Sammy

https://mamatooo.wordpress.com/blog/

Sharing our real family life, from days out, to the mama struggles and day to day juggles of our working life.

My questions for the liebster award nominees:

1.) Who has been the biggest influence in your life?

2.) What is your biggest goal in life right now?

3.) What were you like as a kid?

4.) What is one thing that I should know about you that I’d never think to ask?

5.) If you had to describe yourself using only 3 words what would they be?

6.) What is something that makes you happy?

7.) What was it that inspired you to start blogging?

Again, I would like to thank Mindy for nominating me for this award. I also want to thank all of my nominees for being such honest, amazing mums. You are an inspiration to me, keep doing what you’re doing!

Pets and kids

I always knew that I wanted my children to grow up around pets. Mainly because growing up I did just that and some of my best childhood memories are from time spent with the pets I grew up with.

When I was a kid, over the years we’d had a few dogs and cats and I spent a lot of time with each of them. I remember one of the dogs we had giving birth to 15 puppies and I helped my mum to hand rear them all! What an experience that was! I remember bottle feeding them and as they got bigger I would play with them and run from one room to another while they all would come charging after me! (There is no way that I would ever allow 15 small dogs to run around our house – sorry, Kory! but I still wanted Kory to have at least one dog in his life.) One of the puppies from the litter was truly special to me, he was the smallest and the softest of them all and I wanted to keep him, I remember putting him in my stocking for Christmas and I asked my mum could we have him but she still said no. At the time I thought she was being mean but looking back as an adult, I understand that obviously we already had way too many pets in the house! We could have opened a zoo!

Sometimes growing up can be lonely, you might not always fit in, you might struggle to make friends or have a bad day. Not necessarily when you’re a toddler like Kory but already at 2 years old, when Kory comes home from nursery he is always so excited to come home to see our pets, especially Harley, our dog, who he’s very close with. This two have such a bond, they’re honestly the best of friends and it melts my heart to watch them together. He usually shouts ‘Kory missed Harley!’ As soon as he walks through the front door and gives him a great big hug. Knowing he’s got Harley to come home to must be comforting for him.

Sure, having pets can sometimes make your house messy and they can break things but watching Kory with our pets reminds me of my own fond memories from my childhood with my old pets. When I watch him snuggling up to Harley on the couch, or when I watch him playing a game with the cats, I can see he’s happy, he’s making memories and in that moment, I know exactly how he feels because I’ve felt that too and I hope one day he can look back at the memories he’s made with his pets with the same fondness that I have for the pets that I grew up with.

That for me is well worth a couple of chewed socks and a few plucked steps on the stairs along the way…

Self care ideas

So yesterday I was having a bit of a down day, I felt like utter rubbish and was sat at home just feeling sorry for myself. When I start to feel like that, more often than not it’s because I need some way overdue me time and it’s a reminder to myself that I need to look after me as well.

Finding the time for yourself when you’re a parent is tricky. The only time I have to myself is when Kory goes to bed and by this point I’m way too tired to do anything anyway and usually just end up going to bed myself so that I can catch up on some zzzzzzzzz. And there’s nothing wrong with that but if that’s what I’m doing all the time then before I know it it’s been months since I last did anything that I enjoy that was just for me. Sometimes I feel like i’m stuck in the same routine of just waking up, seeing to Kory, tidying the house, playing all day, making dinner, tidying up again, putting Kory to bed and then doing the same thing all over again on repeat day in and day out and it’s so easy to get stuck in a loop. I love being a stay at home mum but when you start to feel fed up of the usual day to day life then it’s starts to feel more like a chore and that’s not how I want to feel. That’s when I know that it’s time for me to reboot.

I don’t know about you but if I do something that’s just for myself, I feel guilty. I feel like I shouldn’t be reading a book once Kory has gone to bed because there’s pots that need doing instead or I try to tell myself that if me and R go on a date, I’m palming Kory off which I know isn’t true because he’s always with me but this is just the way that my mind works. I’m sure some of you will know what I’m talking about and will have felt this way yourself at some point but it’s still so easy to feel all alone.

So I want to share with you a list of self care ideas that I recommend for when you’ve had a bad day or just find yourself needing a bit of time to recuperate. Here’s some things you can do to make yourself feel better again because self care is important, I need to remind myself that it isn’t selfish to take care of myself, we all need to look after ourselves so that we can look after our littles:

  • Take a long, hot, relaxing soak in a bubble bath. Maybe even treat yourself to a bath bomb? Wash, shave and exfoliate. Make yourself feel human again!
  • Escape by reading a good book.
  • Listen to happy songs.
  • Do absolutely nothing. Relax.
  • Write down a list of things you’re grateful for.
  • Write down a list of things that you like about yourself.
  • Nap.
  • Watch a feel good movie or tv show.
  • Wear pyjamas.
  • Get dressed up.
  • Declutter.
  • Go for a walk, get some fresh air.
  • Have some alone time.
  • Paint your nails.
  • Drink a cup of tea.
  • Apply a face mask.
  • Do your hair.
  • Eat chocolate.
  • Pour yourself a glass of wine.
  • Take a break from social media.
  • Make something. Get crafty. Bake.
  • Treat yourself to takeout.
  • Light a scented candle.

I’ve come to realise that whilst I’m pretty good at taking care of my family and looking after the house, I’m not very good at caring for myself. I often find myself run-ragged and tend to neglect my own needs. So this blog post is a reminder to myself to slow down and practice more self care. And this reminder is as much for me as it is for you…

Running on empty

Today I feel like I’m running on empty. Mentally, emotionally and physically…

Last night, I had a really bad night with Kory. He ended up in our bed with us and all night he just kept screaming in his sleep, it would take ages for me to finally calm him down and get him back off to sleep and then when I did he just kept waking back up for a drink. I don’t know what that was all about! I lost count of how many times I woke up with him through the night and despite how many times we were both up last night, Kory still managed to get up out of bed first thing this morning, I thought maybe he would have wanted to sleep in this morning and at the very least I thought he’d just want a day on the couch watching tv and reading but today he seems so full of energy! Meanwhile I’m walking around the house looking like a crackhead?! I honestly don’t know how he does it because I’m absolutely shattered so how does he run off such little sleep?! Recently he seems to have spouts of sleeping really well and then spouts of his sleep at night just being dreadful. I don’t know what the cause of this is but I suppose with kids it could be anything. So that’s the reason why I feel physically tired.

Emotionally, I feel like I’ve had a lot to deal with recently. Some of which I haven’t shared online but especially with Kory’s new stutter that just seems to have suddenly come on out of the blue. I speak more about Kory’s stuttering here. It’s something that has me really worried. It very well could just go away and I’ve been reassured by plenty of other people that it will but my worst fears are that he gets embarrassed by the stutter and goes within himself or the kids at nursery point it out and he gets a complex from it. I don’t want this to effect my confident, out going little boy who has fantastic speech for his age and has come on leaps and bounds since starting nursery. Somewhere he really enjoys going.

Which leads me to my next form of tiredness. I feel mentally tired because I feel like I am to blame somehow for Kory’s stuttering and I’ve been giving myself such a really hard time about it. I think as mums we always blame ourselves when it comes to our kids; is it something we’ve done? Is it something we’ve not done? It must be our fault? I’ve just been going round and round in my head thinking every thought possible as to why Kory’s stutter could have been brought on because of me and what can I do for him to make it better. When he’s speaking and I can see him struggling to get his words out and stuttering, I can’t help but get upset and it’s hard holding it in. And not just the guilt. But I’ve been worrying about it lots too, worrying about my little boy and how I want to protect him in this world and shield him from anyone who might upset him.

So that’s why I feel like I’m running on empty today. I’ve been trying to keep my head up and deal with it all by myself and I think I’ve just reached that point where I have to realise I need to cut myself some slack.

Being a mum and taking care of your child is hard enough but trying to do it whilst you’re running on empty just sucks.

Stuttering

Recently i’ve noticed that Kory has started to stutter a little when he’s speaking. At first I put it down to his age and maybe him just trying to get his words out a bit too fast but I don’t know anyone else’s children that do this? So I thought i’d do a bit of research of my own about stuttering in children and see what information I could find.

Apparently developing a stutter is quite common between children aged 2-5 years which happens to be Kory’s age group which did make me feel a little better. It also said that stuttering is usually just a phase that children go through and that it’s not normally anything to worry about, it’s hard to determine whether the stutter would become a long term problem because that’s usually something that’s figured out further along down the line but it’s more often than not nothing that needs to be worried about.

After searching the internet and reading forums, I found out that stuttering in children can be brought on by their brain working faster than their mouth (which is what I thought was the cause for Kory’s sudden stutter initially), there’s also a few other potential causes as well but none that seem fitting… There was also some suggestions in which I can help Kory with his stuttering. I read that I can help by slowing down how I speak to encourage him to do the same, get down to Kory’s level when he is speaking to me, make eye contact with him and show that I’m listening, remain patient when he’s trying to get his words out and do not draw attention to the stuttering by saying things like ‘slow down.’ ‘take your time, you’re stuttering.’ For example. These remarks may sound helpful but really they’re just drawing unnecessary attention to his stutter and this could effect him. If I’m honest, I’d already put a few of these suggestions in place to try and help Kory so I’m just going to keep doing what I’m doing and see if that helps with his stutter.

I really hope the stuttering is nothing that I need to be worried about. Kory has always been a brilliant speaker and I really don’t know how or why this stutter has suddenly come on out of nowhere but it would be a real shame if something like this was to have a negative impact on him. Kory has always been a really out going little boy, I also don’t want this to effect him at nursery, amongst his friends or have an effect on his confidence. Speaking of nursery, I’m going to mention it to them tomorrow and see if they’ve noticed anything or can help in any way. Chances are, they’ve had plenty of experience with children who stutter and will be able to help both me and Kory.

Have your children ever suddenly started to stutter? If they did, what did you do to help them with that? Any advice is appreciated!

Dogs n Dough

On Friday my Nan and grandad looked after Kory for us why I took Rory to Dogs n Dough in Manchester for an early birthday treat. Tucked away down a little side street just off Bow Lane near Albert Square, Dogs n Dough is an underground bar and diner that can easily be passed by but once you spot the neon side and the menu board out front, you’ll wonder how you ever missed it!

Dogs n Dough specialises in hot dogs and pizzas like you’ve never seen before. You can wash your food down with a whole range of different beers, cocktails, shakes or sodas and their sides are pretty special too; nachos with a side order of chilli? Loaded fries? Yes please! This little hidden treasure has become our new favourite hot spot and we will definitely be visiting again. What we love about Dogs n Dough as much as the tasty food they serve and the great service is the atmosphere. It’s a very chilled out, relaxed environment.

Me and Rory both ordered hot dogs, Rory ordered the Farmageddon hot dog. A hot dog covered in pulled beef, pulled pork, crispy bacon, fried chicken and chilli cheese and I ordered the Funky Chicken hot dog which included cajun fried chicken, bacon, slaw and bbq sauce but I traded the slaw for extra cheese. We also shared a side order of Oinkers, which are curly fries that are smothered in bacon bits and baconnaise and lastly we shared a chilli bowl that came with their own house chilli and doritos for scooping. We each ordered a drink as well, Rory ordered an apple pie milkshake which was so tasty he downed it all in record breaking time, so fast that even the server commented and I ordered myself an ice cold Dr. Pepper.

We ordered all of the above and it only came to just over £20! I felt like we were ripping them off! This was our second time visiting Dogs n Dough and the food was delish as always and with 50% off ALL food every Wednesday, Thursday and Friday throughout the whole of January we’d have been silly to miss out!

It was nice to have some time just the two of us as well, it was definitely well needed. We love our son to bits but dining child free meant that we actually got to sit down, enjoy our meals together and chat without being interrupted every 5 minutes and having to keep getting up to walk around the restaurant with Kory… Because what two year old wants to sit still? Really?

If you’re ever in Manchester City Centre, Dogs n Dough is well worth a visit. For more information, you can head to their website: http://www.dogsndough.com

* This is not a sponsored post. *